Widgets and Plug-ins Drive Traffic to Your Site and Enhance your Social Media Reputation and Prominence: Lesson #6

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A widget provides a visual interaction point for manipulation of data. Adding widgets to your site will drive traffic to your site and enhance your Social Media efforts and Digital Reputation. “Sharing” widgets that I have added to my posts include: Twitter, Digg, Facebook, Google Plus, LinkedIn and StumbleUpon. This activity allows readers to share my posts with their digital network. This is a great way to engage learners, promote a business and enhance your digital reputation.

Image representing delicious as depicted in Cr...

Image via CrunchBase

 

Here are some widgets. You can find the code for specific widgets by doing a Goole Search: For example type in “Follow Friday Widget

Here’s a FollowFriday widget:

http://www.followfriday.com/widgets/vino_con_vista/4

Here’s a Twitter Badge:

Twitter Badge A Twitter Badge will help you get more followers.

Add these features to the side bar of your blog’s main column. This content will allow your readers to get your latest Twitter updates or your RSS Feed from other websites. I like to send followers to my Pinterest Boards.

Groupon uses widgets to help merchants design customized online offers. Payscale provides a library of widgets that help website builders add salary calculators and cost of living indexes.

Follow these directions from WordPress to enhance your WordPress site with widgets:

1. To activate a widget, go to Appearance > Widgets in your dashboard. Drag the desired widget over to the Sidebar module on the right. Be sure to hit save and close when you’re done editing a widget’s settings.

2. First, write a title for the post in the space at the top. Think of your post title as a headline for a news article — the more detailed and captivating it is, the more readers it’s going to attract. Since this is just a test post, keep it short and sweet.

3. Add Facebook send and like buttons so people can easily share your content to their Facebook page

4. Optimize your business-related “LinkedIn” Contacts by adding the LinkedIn button to your WordPress sidebar.

5. Generate a Pinterest Widget on your page by “Building It” from your Pinterest Profile. Then copy and paste the code into Your Textbox on WordPress.

6. Here are some of the extra widgets that you can drop and drag into your dashboard and add to your posts:

Delicious

Sphinn

Reddit

Digg

Stumbleupon

FriendFeed

Add the Zemanta Plug-in to your site for pictures and related articles. Go to Plug-ins in your dashboard.

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Infographics and Pinterest: Social Media Lesson #4

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Vitruvian Man by Leonardo da Vinci, Galleria d...

Vitruvian Man by Leonardo da Vinci, Galleria dell’ Accademia, Venice (1485-90) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Information graphics or infographics are graphic visual representations of information, data or knowledge.

It is easy to create an infographic by generating a pie chart for your industry. Explain the industry revenue and the key participants. Explain the impact of the market share on the HHI and industry concentration Then post your blog to Twitter and LinkedIn.

These graphics present complex information quickly and clearly. These “Visual Representations” include: time-lines, a matrix or a Venn Diagram. They are well-suited to blog posts.

Infographics are a useful way to convey meaningful information. Leonardo da Vinci‘s Vitruvian Man is an outstanding representation of an Infographic. The drawing, which is in pen and ink on paper, depicts a male figure in two superimposed positions with his arms and legs apart and simultaneously inscribed in a circle and square. The drawing and text visually depict the concept of the Canon of Proportions or, less often, Proportions of Man.

Self-portrait of Leonardo da Vinci. Red chalk....

Self-portrait of Leonardo da Vinci. Red chalk. 33 × 21 cm. Turin, Royal Library (inv.no. 15571). NOTE This image is in red chalk. Do not revert to the black and white image. Deutsch: Kopf eines bärtigen Mannes, sog. Selbstbildnis. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Leonardo da Vinci  (April 15, 1452 – May 2, 1519) was an “Italian Renaissance  painter, sculptor, architect, musician, scientist, mathematician, engineer, inventor, anatomist, geologist, cartographer, botanist, and writer whose genius, perhaps more than that of any other figure, epitomized the Renaissance humanist ideal. Leonardo has often been described as the archetype of the Renaissance Man, a man of “unquenchable curiosity” and “feverishly inventive imagination.”

Leonardo

Leonardo (Photo credit: Arenamontanus)

Leonardo’s drawing represents the correlations of ideal human proportions with geometry described by the ancient Roman architect Vitruvius in De Architectura. Leonardo’s drawing is named in honor of the architect.

We are in a visual content revolution vortex! The  infographic craze and Pinterest, Facebook and Google+ are growing exponentially.

“By visualizing information, we turn it into a landscape that you can explore with your eyes, a sort of information map. And when you’re lost in information, an information map is kind of useful.” (David McCandless)

Check out his video about visual information:

http://www.ted.com/talks/view/lang/en//id/937

Read these tips on how to optimize your images:  http://blog.hubspot.com/blog/tabid/6307/bid/32567/A-Marketer-s-Guide-to-Optimizing-Images-for-Google-Search.aspx#ixzz1tAiuGj2t

In business we use pie charts, bar graphs and stock charts to convey trends. Videos, Pinterest, Flickr, Slidesharing and Podcasts can all be useful infographics. We want to disseminate our information to the collective knowledge of our “digital cocktail” party crowd.

Great headlines and engaging content coupled with outstanding Infographics can help us with our efforts. In addition, insert some eye-catching pictures or graphics above the “Fold”. Timing the release of your post is also critical. I find that lunchtime posts are effective.

Here’s a list of useful infographics for you to incorporate into your Social Media Arsenal:

1. Slideshare is a great way to share high-quality content. Think about how we use BlackBoard in our course shells. You can use an embedded video Zipcast tool.

2. Short Videos like “The Fountains in Rome” series on my YouTube Channel provide an example of a powerful infographic tool that can drive traffic to your site.

3. Embed a YouTube video or ”Food Truck” photo slide show into your post. This is a fun way to tell an interesting story or convey information.

4. Don’t forget the mind mapping concept we discussed in class. Download the www.xmind.net software. Incorporate a mind map into your post. You can search my mindmaps at “SocialMediaEvie” on the site.

Red Pinterest logo

Red Pinterest logo (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

5. Check out my Pinterest Boards by clicking on the button on my websites. Create your boards at www.pinterest.com. Give your boards an interesting title and place them in the proper category.

Pinterest is a social catalog service or virtual pinboard where you can categorize and share the things that you love. You can create a collection of pins for your board. I have added the widget to this site bar of this site with a link to the travel “Boards” that I have created. As a blogger, create pins or boards with a theme that is relevant to your content. Add a Pinterest share button to your site. I have created lessons for my students on Pinterest that link back to my website.

Watch this video to learn how to add Pinterest to your toolbar

http://pinterest.com/about/goodies/

More Pinterest info: http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/pinterest-pin-it-button/

Pinterest widgets http://wordpress.org/search/pinterest

Check out this mindjet manager software: http://www.mindjet.com/products/mindmanager/

6. Add a “TinyMCE” button to your toolbar in your dashboard settings. This will allow you to enter tables into your posts.

7. You should consider installing and activating a plug-in called “Google Doc Embedder”.

Here’s the checklist that I distributed to the class. I have embedding the code using Google Docs and I am publishing this link to the Web. Anyone with the link, can use the document.

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1Ei502Vr4M7Zfo4C7u3QFI7mDFbLwEf2x4IK-hIvg09s/edit?hl=en_US

I changed the privacy settings under the “Share” button and I copied and pasted the “iframe” code into the blog post.

If I change the Privacy settings to Public this happens: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1Ei502Vr4M7Zfo4C7u3QFI7mDFbLwEf2x4IK-hIvg09s/edit?hl=en_US

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